[Top 10] SWTOR Best Builds for PvP

SWTOR Best Builds for PvP
Prepare yourself fully to face off with other players with the most efficient PvP builds in Star Wars: The Old Republic.

    PvP is an excellent vein of content in Star Wars: The Old Republic, with dynamic maps and interesting game modes that create an environment for amazing Player-versus-Player interactions. Whether it’s a Capture-the-Point, Team Deathmatch, Voidstar or Huttball, you’re going to find something that fits your tastes in SWTOR’s Warzones. There are a few differences to the PvP lifestyle when it comes to gearing and building a character to make them fit for the job, and while it doesn’t differ hugely from PvE, there are still important things to know. Knowing which classes are in the meta for PvP can help you demolish enemies with ease, or blow people away with an unexpected choice. If you play SWTOR, you already know that any class is a viable pick for whatever content you’re hoping to jump into, so this is by no means gospel when it comes to which class is “best” for PvP. 

First things first: gear! As many of you may know by now, what you wear matters when it comes to the stats. As with PvE, you’re going to want to accumulate a certain threshold of stat points in a few different pools to get the most out of your gear in terms of damage. The general consensus on gearing for PvP is as follows:

  • Around 3300 critical rating (42%) is advisable.
  • 1213 alacrity if you are going for the first alacrity threshold (recommended if you are running with 3300 critical), or 3208 for the second threshold (not recommended if you are trying to achieve 3300 critical rating, since you simply won’t have enough room left in your stat pool to achieve both).
  • Unlike PvE, you don’t necessarily need accuracy as a stat. You will miss your attacks more often if you don’t take any accuracy, but will be able to take more stats in other more meaningful departments (like critical or alacrity) to increase the potential of your damage. Many PvPers choose to take a boost in potential rather than make sure all of their abilities are hitting every time. A happy medium is to try to get around 105% (650) accuracy rating for PvP, which will allow you to hit more often, while still letting you place stats elsewhere. 

Remember that PvP matches (called Warzones) will also Bolster your character, which increases your base stats and combat level, giving you a little wiggle room when it comes to stat allocation. 

    It’s a good idea to use critical rated crystals (Eviscerating) on both your mainhand and offhand weapons, as well as a Proficiency Stimulant, which will boost your critical and accuracy stats. For PvP in particular, it’s best to pick relics of Focused Retribution and Serendipitous Assault, though relic choice is really up to your playstyle. 

    Feel free to also play around with your stats in PvP. While it’s generally accepted that the above stats work well for any given Warzone, you might find that a different method works better for your particular spec or playstyle. That’s one of the nice things about SWTOR, you can experiment and go off the beaten track and still find something that works!

    Below is a quick list of the top performing specs in PvP right now:

10. Sniper - Marksmanship

    Mirror Class: Gunslinger - Sharpshooter

Eagle Eyes : Hunker down as a Marksmanship Sniper and take down your foes from far away.

    While Snipers perform well in PvE content, it’s a little more tricky in PvP. A good player with a solid understanding of how the Sniper can defend itself and gain the upper hand will do just fine in PvP, but the skill ceiling for a new player just getting started can be a touch rougher than some of the other classes and specs. Your positioning (which arguably is the hardest part of the class) is everything as a Sniper, and your opponents are going to know that, too. 

  • Sniper’s group-wide shield, Ballistic Shields can help a great deal when amidst a team fight while defending a point.
  • With the Established Foothold set bonus, you’ll be much more unmovable, making it a great choice for PvP encounters. A Sniper who knows what they’re doing will easily be able to knock back any enemy that comes close to them and snipe them down before they can regain range. 
  • The range of the Marksmanship Sniper is incredible, and really makes for some frustrating situations when you’re put up against one that knows how to keep their distance. 
  • This class’ defensives are some of the best, with Evasion and Shield Probe.
  • For more information on how to build utilities, see this guide: https://sites.google.com/view/merlyn-swtor/imperial/imperial-agent/sniper/marksman-sniper. While it doesn’t necessarily go into depth on how to build for PvP, you can see a rundown of all the utilities you can choose and what they do.  

9. Mercenary - Arsenal

    Mirror Class: Commando - Gunnery

Guns Blazing : Is there anything more satisfying than the “pew, pew” of the Mercenary’s twin blasters?

    As with PvE, the Arsenal Mercenary is forgiving and easy-to-learn, which makes it a great candidate for a new player. While they are no longer in the meta as they were before 6.0, they can still pack a punch and have pretty excellent survivability. 

  • Mercenaries have access to a great defensive: Responsive Safeguards, which heals you for the damage you take while reflecting half of it back at your enemy. Essentially, this ability can pretty much heal you back to full, and you can keep on trucking. 
  • Arsenal Mercenaries are highly mobile and are able to readily reposition or kite during any PvP encounter. Excellent for harassing a point or defending one!
  • Since Arsenal is a burst spec, it’s easy to target-swap to prioritized enemies without missing out on damage potential.
  • With off-heals and powerful defensives, the Mercenary is able to take a beating and keep on blazing. 
  • For more information on how to build utilities, see here: https://vulkk.com/2020/08/29/swtor-6-0-mercenary-arsenal-pve-guide-by-endonae/. Like the above guide, it’s not specifically tailored toward PvP, but it gives you a full list of the utilities to choose from, which you can use to deduce what might be best for a PvP situation yourself. 

8. Sorcerer - Lightning

    Mirror Class: Sage - Telekinetics

An Electric Personality : Shock your opponents with sparks as the Lightning Sorcerer.

    With Lightning’s 35 meter range, it makes this spec an easy choice for kiting in PvP. Keep your distance while attacking a point, and drive your opponents crazy as they try to keep up with you.

  • Phase Walk is currently a Sorcerer-only ability (if you remember SWTOR in 2016, you’ll remember the travesty of Phase Walk being taken away from Assassins!), which allows you to instantly return to that marked position. This is an incredible move for quickly disengaging from a fight to heal up or kite.
  • Sorcerers have access to both Static Barrier and Force Barrier, both of which are pretty amazing defensive abilities. Static Barrier can be used on yourself every 15 seconds, and allows you to absorb a good chunk of damage (and in some cases, heal when it collapses). You can also apply your Static Barrier to your allies if they’re taking heavy damage. Force Barrier, known as “the God bubble”, gives you immunity from all controlling and damaging effects. It’s incredibly powerful for survival, and can be the difference between life and death.
  • Remember, as a class that has a healer as one of its other specs, you have access to a rez (Reanimation). You can use this on a team-mate in a Warzone and revive them back into the fight without a respawn timer! 
  • With proper utilities, the Lightning Sorcerer can kite like no other and make a real nuisance of themselves as they rain down lightning across the field of battle.
  • Lightning is also currently missing a PvP-oriented guide since 6.0, but this guide (https://sites.google.com/view/merlyn-swtor/imperial/sith-inquisitor/sorcerer/lightning-sorcerer) will give you the details about how each utility works, and which Tacticals and set bonus to take.

7. Marauder - Fury

    Mirror Class: Sentinel - Concentration

“Time to rage!” : Fueled by hatred, the Fury Marauder is a formidable opponent in any fight.

    There’s a lot of debate about Fury Marauder as a whole. Many people like to say it is an underperforming class – all while neglecting to actually play it. Here’s the thing: any class in SWTOR is viable and can pretty much do any job you throw at it. Some might perform a little bit better in different circumstances, but they can all do it. The Fury Marauder is no exception. It has great burst, pretty solid AoE potential, and is perhaps the easiest of the Marauder specs to pick up and learn. 

  • Fury is great for leaping about to different targets, which makes target-swapping easier. With certain utilities, your Leap can be used twice! Fury Marauders also have access to a move called Obliterate, which is a shorter-range leap that causes your heavy hitters to proc.
  • Once Force Crush is used on an opponent, you gain stun, knockback and interrupt immunity for a small window. This is great for PvP, as the enemy players will undoubtedly be attempting to stunlock you into oblivion. 
  • Marauders can use Predation, which allows all members of their group in range to have increased movement speed. This is excellent for getting to a point faster, or simply acting a small group-wide defensive. 
  • Undying Rage makes the Marauder pretty much immune to… almost everything in PvP for a few seconds. Great for survivability!
  • Here’s an excellent guide for Fury Marauders that explores both PvP and PvE aspects of the spec: https://vulkk.com/2020/01/12/swtor-6-0-fury-marauder-guide-by-anatessia/. Included is a full list of utilities and tacticals that detail whether they are beneficial for PvP or not. 

6. Juggernaut - Vengeance

    Mirror Class: Guardian - Vigilance

The Emperor’s Wrath : Demolish your enemies with the durasteel will of the Vengeance Juggernaut.

    You can’t go wrong with a Juggernaut, end of story. As with PvE content, they are able to dish out excellent damage, and are highly survivable. Tank damage like a pro while rotating your incredible defensive abilities – the Juggernaut is truly a champion of PvP.

  • As a DoT spec, Vengeance is going to excel at getting right into the middle of battle and DoT spreading away. Great for team fights, your spreads will inevitably top the damage charts at the end of the match. 
  • Surprisingly, Juggernauts also tend to do pretty well on the healing charts at the end of Warzones, too! This is because their Enraged Defense is just so powerful as a self-healing defensive that it can end up reporting huge healing numbers at the end of a match.
  • As a melee class that has one of its specs as a tank, the Vengeance Juggernaut also has access to taunts. One might not expect taunts to be useful in PvP, since your opponents have a mind of their own and don’t have to look at you if they’re taunted. However, in a PvP environment, taunts allow you to peel, which means that if your opponent is attacking someone besides you while your taunts are active on them, they do reduced damage. This is amazing for helping out your healers or other teammates, and they will thank you for it!
  • Vengeance has a pretty straight-forward priority rotation that is generally easy to pick up and learn!
  • Another guide by Anatessia, detailing briefly some PvP utilities and tacticals for the Vengeance Juggernaut: https://vulkk.com/2019/11/25/swtor-6-0-vengeance-juggernaut-guide-by-anatessia/.

5. Assassin - Deception

    Mirror Class: Shadow - Infiltration

From the Shadows : Take down the other team with a flurry of quick lightsaber maneuvers that will leave them slack-jawed as the Deception Assassin. 

    The Deception Assassin is a favorite pick for Warzones for its high burst potential and superb ability to thoroughly harass a point and live to tell the tale. It's easy-to-master rotation makes it a common sight on any Warzone battlefield.

  • Deception’s access to stealth makes it incredible for sneaky point-capping. Mez a guard and start capping to take the point before your opponent can wake up or help can arrive! 
  • As a highly-mobile class, Deception Assassins can easily keep up with the fast-paced environment of PvP matches, with almost no downtime.
  • Low Slash is a ranged CC that can be used from 30 meters away – as one of your only ranged abilities, it’s excellent for shutting down a healer attempting to hard-cast abilities or stopping someone from capping a point. 
  • Force Cloak allows you to escape from combat at your pleasure. Once disengaged, you can find a safe spot to heal yourself back up to full, re-stealth and re-engage! 
  • An excellent PvP-oriented guide for Deception Assassins: https://vulkk.com/2019/12/17/swtor-6-0-deception-assassin-pvp-guide-by-krea/. Even includes details such as map strategies! 

4. Operative - Lethality

    Mirror Class: Scoundrel - Ruffian

Venom-Tipped : Laced with poison, the Lethality Operative is hard to catch and hard to kill.

    The Lethality Operative has amazing survivability in PvP, and though it is a DoT spec, has pretty good burst potential as well. Spritely and equipped with stealth utility, the Lethality Operative can engage and disengage in a heart-beat. 

  • One of Lethality’s incredible utilities is their free instant heal with their Kolto Infusion that is proc’d after Exfiltrating. Not having to stand still to cast this ability makes the Lethality Operative wickedly difficult to kill. 
  • Like all specs in the Operative class, the Lethality Operative has access to Infiltrate, which is a group-wide stealth ability that allows you to smuggle even your non-stealther teammates into the heart of enemy territory. Excellent for surprise attacks.
  • Your damage definitely needs time to ramp-up as a Lethality Operative, since your attacks are mostly DoT-oriented. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing though, since you can DoT spread and keep stabbing. 
  • The Debilitator set bonus is a great choice for PvP content, as it gives your Exfiltrate a shorter cooldown and grants you two charges to your Debilitate (a stun ability). The Tactician set is still great, and is the go-to choice for PvE, so if you’re looking to do both, you may want to go with Tactician to cover all your bases.
  • Here’s a guide detailing both PvE and PvP aspects of the Lethality Operative: https://vulkk.com/2019/12/03/swtor-6-0-lethality-operative-guide/.

3. Powertech - Pyrotech

    Mirror Class: Vanguard - Plasmatech

Fulminate! : Your enemies will scarcely be able to see through the thick cover of flames that makes up the Pyrotech Powertech’s kit.

    In today’s current meta, the Powertech is always at the top if we look at pure number output. Their damage is pretty much unmatched, which makes them a vicious choice for PvP. Though Powertechs are generally more squishy than the other classes in terms of outright defensive abilities, they more than make up for it with their damage.

  • With excellent sustained damage output and awesome AoE potential, the Pyrotech PT is readily able to take control of a group and dish out huge numbers.
  • Sonic Rebounder, a utility point for all PT specs, is incredible. This allows your aggro-drop ability to place a shield on seven other allies in range, and reflects any damage done to them, back at their attacker. Though it doesn’t protect you, your group will be thankful for the added protection!
  • Like Juggernaut, the PT can peel for its allies by taunting enemy players!
  • Jump to, or pull your enemy into your flaming fists. Whichever you decide, it will wreak havoc. 
  • Pyrotech is once more another spec that is lacking a purely PvP-based guide for 6.0, but you can take a gander at a PvE guide here: https://vulkk.com/2020/01/04/swtor-6-0-pyrotech-powertech-pve-guide/. As with the others, it lists utilities and provides solid information about set bonuses and Tacticals. 

2. Operative - Concealment

    Mirror Class: Scoundrel - Scrapper

Unseen Assailant : Strike from behind with a chuckle and cut down your foes before they can so much as call for help as the Concealment Operative.

    A Concealment Operative is one of the only classes and specs that will give me an issue in PvP as a healer main. Their damage is incredible, and they can be extremely fast and bursty – excellent for harassing a capped point or defending an objective. Their ability to survive isn’t lackluster either, which makes them a formidable choice for PvP. 

  • On top of the normal defense that comes with an Operative roll, Concealment’s Exfiltrate grants them a short buff that further increases their defense chance. If you know when heavy damage is coming, you can easily time your Exfiltrate and absorb it! Amazing for survivability. 
  • Concealment is king when it comes to knockdowns and roots, making it difficult for their enemies to get out of their range. With no chance for escape, your opponent is sure to perish!
  • Sadly for Concealment, they don’t get that nice instant-cast on their Kolto Infusion – but, they still have access to Kolto Probes, which can provide them with a damage reduction with the right utility and provide excellent off-heals. 
  • Concealment is great for stealth-capping points (much like Deception), and excels in harassing guards.
  • This guide is excellent for PvP in mind when playing a Concealment Operative: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1hUexZ6tikkhz-n5DMaeo1KcvVxKM1P-r_FONG0afvks/edit.

1. Powertech - Advanced Prototype 

    Mirror Class: Vanguard - Tactics

Fully Operational : Kitted out with the best arsenal a Bounty Hunter can buy, the Advanced Prototype Powertech is sure to dizzy their opponents with a show of tech-based force.

    Once more, PT is at the top! Generally, burst classes tend to perform better in PvP, just because speed helps you kill your opponents faster. Don’t be misled though, DoT specs (like PT’s Pyrotech) are also viable, and can really wreak havoc as their DoTs cascade. 

  • If we look at parses, Pyrotech tends to outclass Advanced Prototype (AP) in most cases when the situation is ideal – but, because PvP is so prone to change and because the Pyrotech lacks the same survivability as AP, it’s easy to place it above Pyrotech in this list. 
  • All of AP’s abilities are instant, meaning you don’t have to be standing still for anything! This is great for mobility and keeping up with any wiley enemy players. 
  • Carbonize allows the Powertech to stun up to 8 enemies within its range, which is helpful for team fight situations and can save the life of your teammates if timed correctly.
  • Like Pyrotech, AP also is able to use Rebounders for team utility.
  • Another spec which lacks a current up-to-date PvP guide, you can take a look at utilities here: https://sites.google.com/view/merlyn-swtor/imperial/bounty-hunter/powertech/advanced-prototype-powertech.

There you have it, some of the best builds for PvP in Star Wars: The Old Republic! As with all matters when it comes to class choice and spec selection, remember that whatever calls to you, is still a viable choice for all content. Even if something is the best right now, it might not be with the next update down the line. Thankfully for us, SWTOR is a rather balanced MMO, so regardless of your choice, you’re bound to be able to do most of the content you want. Have fun!

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A druid where one would least expect it -New Jersey- Morgan is happiest when immersing herself in the magic of another world, whether in the pages of a book or the technicolor of a beloved video game.
Gamer Since: 2000
Favorite Genre: RTS
Currently Playing: Star Wars: The Old Republic
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